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The Soxhlet extractor is a laboratory apparatus used for the extraction of a target compound from a solid sample. It works by continuously circulating a solvent through the solid sample over a period of time, allowing the target compound to dissolve and be collected.
The Soxhlet extractor consists of a flask for the solvent, a thimble for holding the solid sample, and a condenser for condensing the solvent vapor back into liquid form. The apparatus is named after the German chemist Franz von Soxhlet, who first described its use in the late 19th century.
The Soxhlet extractor is widely used in analytical chemistry for the extraction of lipids, oils, and other compounds from solid samples.